Staff Picks NBA: Draft, Trade and Free Agency Special Common Sense ContributorsJune 22, 2018 Share Share It’s been an exciting and eventful week for the NBA. Here’s a lowdown on the latest developments within the league. Let’s start off with Dwight Howard, a former superstar has now been reduced to an “undesirable” trade piece. In spite of the fact that he performs at an All-star level. It’s sad to see this man’s legacy wither away. But the truth was that the Charlotte Hornets believed in Kemba Walker; The franchise’s only drafted All-star player. They are one of the many teams in limbo. The other being the Brooklyn Nets, whom Howard was traded to. Only two centers in NBA history made more consecutive 1st-team All-NBA selections. pic.twitter.com/6sKn3rk1wv— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) June 21, 2018Brooklyn however are the clear beneficiaries. Not only have they acquired an able player who is great pick and rolls, they also got rid of a lot of financial burdens. Namely, in the form of Timofey Mozgov who was granted highly inflated contract. The Nets have even secured some picks in the 2019 draft and have the space to sign to max players. Last time out it did not pan out the way they hoped it would. Unfortunately, aging Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce failed to recreate their past glories in Brooklyn. Trading Season Continues…#NBADraft2018 .@NBADraft prospect @luka7doncic has arrived in NYC! pic.twitter.com/ZkG6S1gHaF— NBA (@NBA) June 20, 2018The first major draft prospect is, Euro league MVP Luka Doncic. Doncic has every chance to go to the Suns, who are coached by Igor Kokoskov. He is touted by the Atlanta Hawks who may consider trading Dennis Schroder. The Sacramento Kings visited Doncic at Madrid, however the position of point guard is filled by DeAaron Fox. One would be foolish to not put past the fact that the Kings can move Fox to a scoring guard role, and make Doncic their combo guard. The Hawks hold they keys as Doncic is definitely what Memphis wants, and Dallas as well rather surprisingly. Atlanta could use Schroder, and Kent Bazemore in their trade deals. As roles go, Doncic is a better fit on Phoenix, Memphis, and Atlanta, than the other candidates. Such teams may be willing to trade up sacrificing picks or vets along the way. The teams at the top are understood to be open to trade talks and that’s what makes this draft a blockbuster. Draft Profile: DeAndre Ayton Where do you think Ayton will land on June 21st? #NBADraft pic.twitter.com/ErNmup12On— NBA TV (@NBATV) June 14, 2018The projected/consensus number 1 overall pick slated to go to the Phoenix Suns. Ayton is touted to be a generational talent. We last witnessed such play by Shaquille O’Neal, more recently Giannis Antetokounmpo and Dwight Howard before him, * inserts crying emoji *. To put it simply, offensively he is Shaquille O’Neal with a jump shot. He can grab rebounds, do screen and rolls, the lot. He is built and is expected to go toe to toe against NBA players with ease. Defensively he needs work but that comes with the bills of playing in the NBA. He played for Arizona and hasn’t worked out for anyone bar the Suns. He even spent time at the Sun’s gym with Devin Booker, Josh Jackson and more. One would be foolish to let go of a prospect this bright. Duke Blue Devil, Marvin Bagley III comes up next. He appears to be Sacramento’s choice at number 2 after much deliberation. He is a perfect fit alongside the fast guard Fox. Bagley moves as fast as any guard, is agile and puts up double-doubles with outstanding efficiency. He is armed with a competitors’ spirit as quoted, “Absolutely, I want to be the No. 1 pick. By me saying that, it’s not a knock on anybody else in the draft; that’s just the type of player and competitor I am. I want to be the best at anything I do. I don’t want anybody to take that the wrong way when I say I think I should be the No. 1 pick. Anywhere I go I’m going to be willing to put the work in and get better.” Bagley made quite an impression on legendary coach Mike Krzyzewski. Back in January, Coach K called Bagley “the most unique player we’ve had here at Duke during my 38 years. He has everything.” That stands for something. Considering Coach K has worked with legends like Grant Hill who was a generational talent till injuries robbed him, that statement validates his draft stock and the star potential teams see in him. by Rutvik Bhaskar PerepaRutvik Bhaskar Perepa is a student at The University of Manchester working towards a MEng in Mechanical Engineering hoping to be on a placement after Year 3. He has had the privilege to travel around his home country, India and discover the rich heritage and diversity. His personal interests include Food and travel, history, Sport among many others. Often found in discourse on various issues ranging Engineering to Religious Practices, he never shy’s away from being expressive. 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